June 13, 2013

IKEA US Funds First Full-Scale ‘Solar For Sandy’ Project In Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY

Systems Will Provide Back-Up Electricity in Times of Emergency, Lower Everyday Energy Bills

global green logo images

CHICAGO (JUNE 13, 2013) – Speaking to a global audience at the 2013 Clinton Global Initiative America (CGI America) meeting, Global Green USA today announced its Commitment to Action to implement its catalytic ‘Solar For Sandy’ program, which will equip five or more community facilities serving low income residents in New York and New Jersey neighborhoods devastated by Hurricane Sandy with grid-tied, back-up solar energy systems.  Global Green’s first, full-scale ‘Solar for Sandy’ project installation will take place this Fall in Red Hook, NY, in collaboration with IKEA, the world’s largest home furnishings retailer.

Global Green President and CEO Matt Petersen announced the project this afternoon onstage at CGI America. He was joined by Chelsea Clinton and Tracey Kelly, who leads sustainability efforts at IKEA, the Red Hook installation’s lead funder. IKEA’s Red Hook, Brooklyn store and community was deeply impacted by the storm.

When Hurricane Sandy struck, many neighborhoods went without power for weeks and lacked up any back up energy capacity. While many Red Hook residents went without power for days, Global Green’s new solar installation will help mitigate future power blackouts and provide expanded emergency services to the location selected. The new system will not only enable lighting, mobile phone charging, and other basic services, but will also be designed to provide critical services such as refrigeration for medicine and basic heating or cooling.  Furthermore, the solar system will produce energy every day, and lower energy bills, allowing savings to go to critical services for the local neighborhood.

“Global Green’s ‘Solar for Sandy’ initiative will serve as a catalytic model for the resilient, and green rebuilding of low-lying, coastal neighborhoods devastated by Hurricane Sandy, “ stated Petersen. “Through smarter, more sustainable energy systems, we can improve vulnerable infrastructure and reduce ongoing energy costs, as well as demonstrate how we create green jobs as we respond to the realities of sea level rise and climate change.”

“When we learned of Global Green’s Solar for Sandy project in Red Hook, we saw it as a natural fit for IKEA support.  Our commitment to renewable energy has already resulted in solar array installations on 39 IKEA US locations.  And since we have a store in the Red Hook, Brooklyn area, we saw first-hand the hardships that our neighbors had to endure after Hurricane Sandy. The Red Hook solar installation will provide renewable energy on an everyday basis, as well as provide essential energy needs during any future disasters,” stated Mike Ward, IKEA US president.

Located in flood zone A, the Red Hook community install is targeted for completion by October 29, 2013, the one year anniversary of the super-storm that devastated the area. Global Green USA has been working with Parsons The New School For Design to identify the partner site in Red Hook, and students will contribute design proposals for the facility and educational components. This follows a smaller-scale, pilot project from Global Green USA which is currently underway in Far Rockaway, Queens.